Cryptocurrency – which is not a favorable term used on Wall Street is now slowly finding some acceptance amongst big financial banking institutions. The growth of Bitcoin and the overall cryptocurrency markets, especially in the second half of 2017, has pulled several institutional players to the crypto platform. We have recently seen two major U.S. exchanges – CBOE and CME launching Bitcoin futures contracts and other investment products like exchange-traded-funds (ETFs) are also lined up ahead to arrive soon.
As per the latest report from Bloomberg, banking giant – Goldman Sachs – is planning to set up a cryptocurrency trading desk by next year. According to the two people familiar with the matter, Goldman Sachs will get the business running by June 2018. However, one of the two also said that the bank is working on security issues and planning a framework of how it would hold or store the assets.
Goldman Sachs will be the first major Wall Street giant to participate in cryptocurrency activities. Although the crypto market, and more specifically Bitcoin, has managed to resonate with the retail investors, major institutions have kept themselves from getting associated for a long time due to the huge volatility and price swings in the value of digital currencies.
However, Goldman Sachs is the first bank to have announced that they will immediately clear the Bitcoin futures contract offered by CBOE and CME. Other banking firms like Bank-of-America and Citigroup are currently observing as to how the contracts are performing in the market and will accordingly take the decision in the future.
Bloomberg has reported that “Goldman Sachs is now assembling a team in New York, one of the people said. While the bank hasn’t made a decision where to house the desk, one possibility is that it will operate within the fixed-income, currencies and commodities unit’s systematic trading function, which conducts transactions electronically, two people said. Darren Cohen, in the firm’s principal strategic investments group, is also looking at opportunities, another person said.”
Goldman spokesman Michael DuVally said: “In response to client interest in digital currencies, we are exploring how best to serve them.” On the other hand, Goldman CEO Lyod Blankfein has always remained judicious while commenting about Bitcoins. Back in October, during his interview with Bloomberg, Blankfein said that it too early for the bank to consider developing any strategy around Bitcoin as the cryptocurrency is still in developing phase and showing much volatility.
Well, currently the markets have entered bearish momentum as Bitcoin has corrected by more than 30% in just past one week after hitting its all-time high above $20000. Currently, at the press time, Bitcoin is trading at $12800 slipping by more than 20% in just the past 24 hours. The 24-hour trading volumes stand at $18 billion as the market cap of Bitcoin slips to $215B from $300B last week.
Along with Bitcoin, other altcoins like Ethereum, Litecoin and Ripple which were trending this week to its all-time high have undergone a correction. Many analysts have already predicted the existence of a bubble in the market and have cautioned investors to stay alert.